Measure the distance between kitchen tile joists. Many problems with tile stem from issues with the tile it sits on. The bathroom tiles often comprised of a layer of plywood and then a layer of cement board laid across tile joists. Too much space between tile joists means that the tile may sag, which can lead to tile cracking. You can add more blocking between joists to give more support to the tile. Measure the distance between wood tile joists with a measuring tape. This is the measurement you’ll use for the pieces of blocking, as the blocking is going to fit between the tile joists.
Determine how much blocking you’ll need. You can place the blocking at even intervals throughout the room or in areas that specifically need reinforcement. Depending on the size of the tile, you may want to space blocks closer together in order to make the joists more resistant to movement, which will in turn lead to less tile damage.
Cut the blocking to length. Using the measurement you took of the space between wall tile joists, mark very-slightly longer intervals on the boards you’re going to use for blocking. Once the blocking is measured on the boards, use a saw to cut the blocking. A carpenter’s square can be used to ensure a straight line when marking your saw guidelines on the boards.
Remember to leave around 1⁄8 in (0.32 cm) of space between block measurements to account for the width of the saw blade. If you don’t leave this space, each of your blocks will be short.
Put the blocks between the joists and use a hammer to tap them into place. The blocking should fit snugly but should not have to be pounded. If you are struggling to get them in, they may be too wide and can add a bend to the joist boards. If they are too small, they can cause squeaking underfoot.
Secure the blocking between the joists with screws. Screws are preferable to nails because the shape of the screw and the way it is driven into the wood allows for less movement than nails, which is one cause of wood marble tile squeaking. Position a screw on the outside of the joist beam angled downward toward the tile. Using a drill with the appropriate bit, drive the screw through the joist and into the blocking. Do this on both sides of the blocking.